It’s very easy, especially if you’re planning your own training program, to have training sessions that lead to useless physical and mental stress.
I often found myself doing tonnages that, in that moment, weren’t the right ones.
To avoid this self harm, I tried to develop a formula that helps understanding how difficult a training session is going to be.
The following is a simple example. An athlete aiming to Jerk 2×32 for 60 reps is training with 3 minutes work intervals followed by 3 minutes rests. One set with 2×24, one set with 2×28, three sets with 2×32, keeping 6RPM pace for all sets
First, we need to see the ratio between the trainings tonnage and the target tonnage.In this case the athlete lifted the 138.75% of the competition’s target.
The second step is dividing this number by the total duration of the lifting session, including the rest intervals. In this specific case 15 minutes lifting and 12 minutes resting, for a total of 27 minutes. The second factor is 0.051388889.
Third operation is multiplying the two factors (F1 and F2) and multiply again by 1000.
The resulting number will be an indicator of the difficulty percentage of the training session compared to the test/competition.
In this next example, the same athlete with the same target is going to lift for four sets of four minutes, resting 4 minute. First set with 2×24, second set with 2×28, third and fourth with 2×32, keeping the same 6RPM pace. Of course this session is heavier than the previous one, and the difficulty coefficient is now 75%
Applying this formula to a 10′ test will of course lead to a 100% difficulty level.
How to use this formula to your training.
I always try to start easy (around 30%) and go up to 70% in two weeks, then back to 35% and up to 75% again in two weeks, until I hit 80/85%, about ten days before the test.
You can also use this formula on a previous test, in this case you can go up to 90/95%.
How accurate is this?
Enough, as long as you input the correct data. If the athlete we used as an example would plan 120 jerks in 20 minutes, the coefficient would still be 100%, having lifted twice the tonnage in twice the time, so be realistic when programming!